longest wait

2 months ago.. I was holding her.

feeling her heartbeat…hard and fast…

Tomorrow 2 months ago that beautiful heart finally succumb…

stopped beating.

The distance between me and her life grows…every time I go to bed another day is added allowing the gap between our13301399265_00d74cbc29_b time together to grow…but also a day closer to reuniting with her again..

my love/hate relationship with my bed.

Nights I write and I re-connect. ..I also hurt..unexplainable sorrow.

my love/hate relationship with the nights.

I ran this morning. Thought about running the 5k in May…thought about how it will feel to add to the Jennifer Kranz fund at Stanford…I thought about how much she would have loved to help out her doctors. How much she loved them and wanted to make them proud. Her head doc called me last weekend. Just to check in and say she was thinking of her..of us..

These doctors care…that alone made such a difference…They have her cells…the capability to help her make a difference.

It won’t be enough.. no reason will ever be enough. .. but it would make her proud to help them.

We went to our marriage counseling session today … I’m glad we have opted to go this way, taking care of our marriage proactively.. before the pitfalls that seem to befall bereaved couples happens. . We are good. We are solid. A large piece of that we owe to all the financial help we received.. (and his empathetic company) ..that has allowed him to take this time off of work..to be with us…learn how to survive as a family of 5. I thought we would spend time making memories…learning how to be a family of 5 living.. but its much more basic…now all we can focus on is surviving.. hanging on.. barely most times… But we are because we are doing it together. Thank you. Sincerely thank you.

My parents took the boys for an overnight. I knew the time was coming.. that the pain was about to come too hard and too fast to control around them. Today my stomach hurts again.. a discomfort I have only experienced the days immediately following her death. I return so totally to that time. .. mind…body and spirit.

..will the 11th and the 12th of every month be like this for me? Flooding me with memories of those final hours… of saying goodbye to my child in a way I could never have imagined possible…

forever.

IMG_0962We drove to the beach again…spent less than 2 hours there. Just us and baby Charlotte… we walked around and looked at the ocean. We talked.. and remembered and shared. ..mostly during the drive. Near the ocean we were more silent. Observing.

At home we continued to talk about her.. and how much we miss her. We were in our own individual bubbles of shared grief. Tony is deep in the depths of it…realization that this is real has hit..his fog is lifting and there is no mercy. I think I am still in a state of shock and disbelief.. . far different than I thought shock was. I cry .. I sob…I hurt beyond reason. Scarily enough though, I know its a muted emotion .. .I know its still going to get worse.

These times alone we learn so much about each other and from each other. Things I never wanted to know about my husband. ..

the way he sounds when he sobs…the sound of pure agony pouring out of him.. the way his body doubles over.. Experiences husband and wife are not meant to share. This desperate pain should be us for each other many many years down the road.. not now..not together for our daughter.

our firstborn.

DSC03363

Tomorrow my best friend has her second wedding….the original wedding. I’m sorry Fairy. we love you. We will never ever forget the memories of January 4th.

**Jennifer and Nicholas.. pulled this picture and noticed it was number 143-pager code for I love you-
**Jennifer and Nicholas.. and baby Charlotte watching the couple kiss**

Two photos …beginning and end of a life. Separately by 6 miraculous years.

It wasn’t supposed to be like this.. I’m not supposed to be a mom to a dead little girl. I’m not supposed to do this without her.  I keep feeling like I can somehow force this not to be real. Change it all. Wake up from this nightmare.

.. i can’t

As Tony said tonight  — it’s just not fucking fair —

.. its not

and there is not a thing I can do about any of it. I was that kid that would be about to clean my room..but then I was told to do it and would refuse. I have never been able to deal with being forced to do something. .. I became very adept at finding a way out.

.. .not this time though.

This time ..2 months and a few hours from right now I lost complete control. I lost a piece of me. Of my husband. Of my sons and the baby.

We lost her. Jennifer Lynn Kranz.

I will never forget that moment. Her last breath.. her last seconds of life..

for a thousand years I will remember..

She lived. She laughed. She suffered. She was scared.

I held her. I did the best I could in an impossible situation. I am left here wondering if I said the right things.. wondering what it was like for her.

6 yrs old..knowing she was dying.. without understanding of what that means..

confused. trusting.

forever 6 .

Forgive me Jennifer. I wanted to find a way out. I should have prepared you better…but I thought we had time. I didn’t think it would really happen. It hit me today that I truly thought that I would find a way out… the right clinical trial.. to save you.                     save me.

forever broken.

Just like I looked at pictures of Tony last night and grieved for the loss of the spark in his eye…he looked at pictures of our 4yr old and doubted if he would ever smile like that again. ..

wholly. completely. totally. safelyDSC_0096

 

I didn’t have the answer. I hope its a yes. .. I desperately fear its a no. That he knows too much cruelty..Innocence ripped away. ..

forever changed.

another thing beyond my control.. beyond my capability to fix. All 4 of my children have lost their childhoods.. one to death and the others from death.

2 months ago.. I was waiting.. I thought for one moment.

I didn’t realize that moment was just the beginning…

beginning of the longest wait …

to see her again.

K-2014-01-04-001

 

 

 

 

51 Responses to “longest wait”

  1. Libby, I’ve been reading your blog every night for the past few months.
    I hurt for you. For Jennifer. I never met her, but she touched my soul. I hurt for her.
    Is it strange that it feels like I knew her?
    Reading your entry just a few minutes ago, it dawned on me that I didn’t expect it to really happen, either. Deep down, I thought something, somehow, would save her.
    I’m angry too.
    I hurt for you. For Jonathan, for Nicholas, for Charlotte, for Tony.
    For Jennifer.
    A few days ago, you were wondering how many of us would still remember Jennifer in weeks, months, years. I won’t forget.
    Every night when I read your posts, I wish that little by little, you are able to find a little peace to heal your very broken heart.
    Sending you my love. Thinking of you and your family.

  2. Oh friend……smiles, laughter and joy you think will never come, it will. The path is long and difficult but along the way, far down the road, there will be days that have more sunshine than grey. It’s just not pretty getting there. Lifting up in prayer. Here if you need anything.

  3. That unmistakeable light that comes from deep in your soul, that spark in the eye and deep genuine smile, will return….promise.

    Jennifer is forever 6. She has no illness, no pain, no fear, she is perfect, with God. (I know you’d rather she were here with you) **Here I go deleting again**

    I have spent the last several days thinking about Heather as well as the triplets I lost…. I don’t remember when the grief lifted. I don’t remember when that smile came back. I’m surprised that that moment isn’t forever carved into my memory. What I can tell you is that it lifts. I’ve lost several pregnancies besides Heather and the triplets. That loss was the same at first but didn’t seem to last as long mostly because I was focused on getting pregnant again which helped immensely. It also brought the fear of loss again but the urge to try again was deep. Heather was hard….you know how hard.
    I was alone, just me and my grief. The father gone, family far away, so very alone.

    The triplets. 24.6 weeks January 24th 1993 Only one breathed for 14 minutes. The other boy and girl were born sleeping. My husband followed me around, a lot, trying to be attentive. Then, I saw it as him hovering over me, trying to hard to help something he couldn’t help. Nearly two decades later I realize he was following me because I was his life raft. He was lost. I’m ashamed to say I didn’t see that for a very long time.

    A couple days ago, we celebrated 25 years of marriage and 35 years of knowing each other. My husband and I have survived the loss of six souls (seven for me. Heather Ann) We survived. Many don’t…..I don’t think you are one of them.

    I’m rambling, sorry.

    Just know that the spark of life does return, you will all smile again.

    Prayers and love to you all…

  4. Two months can seem so long sometimes, and so short others. To quote John Green, “Time is such a slut, she screws everybody.” I’m so sorry you are learning these things about your husband, but so glad that you have each other to lean on. I continue to pray for your family daily. For peace, understanding (though it will never be enough), and direction in your non profit to keep her memory alive in so many. I have never met you, and to be honest, I probably will not approach you at the 5k next month, but you are all in my thoughts and prayers many times throughout the day. I won’t forget.

  5. I hurt for you and though I have never met you, feel as if I know you because I know the pain you are going through. It takes time but the sun does shine again. Please know you are not alone in this. Sending you positive thoughts and love.

  6. Libby,
    Tears fill my eyes. I read all your blogs. I was 9 when my sister died. Than I was 18 when my brother died and 20 when my dad passed. Ifelt the same emotions as you are only I have no idea what its like to lose a child. I fear it through your writing. I look at my six year old and my unborn baby and think of ways I can protect them from things like this. Cancer sucks.
    Grief overwhelms you. I remember sleepless nights of my parens knowing they would never have their daughter or son back. Which lead my dad to dying of a broken heart literally. Just know as time passes, it gets easier not better. You just learn to live througg it and embrace the memories u have. Pictures are wonderful.

  7. I wish there were words…to ease your grief…. The depth of your love for your family is so palpable. I can feel that love in every post, but today it shines through just a bit stronger.

  8. I was thinking of you a lot yesterday. I was also thinking of you on Wednesday when I was at Stanford participating in a research study on prematurity. I heard the song Wait For Me by Kings of Leon. You should look it up. Prayers for you and Tony and the kids.

  9. You are doing so much to be proactive in your grief. I’m in awe at how much help you have given yourself. It can only be for the better. You and Tony need to stay as one unit. So often a loss can tear a family apart. I commend you for stopping that cycle in its tracks.
    Nothing but love! Sarah

  10. It doesnt seem like it has been two months. I am so so sorry Libby. Today, my daughter and I plan to release pinks balloons in her memory. I am here. I will always be here for you, for Jennifer, for your family. With all the love in my heart I send to you. She will never be forgotten.

  11. Libby I hurt so much for your family. I cried when I read your post. Oh my how much pain your in and how evident it is just in your words. You and Tony are wonderful human beings being strong and staying solid. Death can ruin a marriage and a relationship and I see both of you are working through it only to be stronger in your marriage. Yes the sun seems like it will never shine again but as many have told you it will. When??? I wish I could tell you but you will know little by little and day by day. I am so thankful to have found your blog and to be a part of JLK life through this. It has changed me in so many ways and I am always looking for ways I can help you to make people more aware of pediatric cancer. Don’t ever give up be strong and go forward with your plans for your non profit organization. Do it all for your beautiful little girl. Keep fighting for the cause and one day you will have the glory you deserve knowing you are making a difference. Sending my love and hugs to you and Tony and your wonderful children. May God continue to give you the comfort and the strength you need each and everyday to help you get through this very very hard time……

  12. There is not a word or adjective for a parent who loses a child. We should call it LIBBY and here is why. You are walking, crawling, running through it with such grace and dignity. I’m 100% sure you don’t feel like you are but from a caring outsider, you are. You put words, screams, cries, songs to something not many have to deal with within a young family. You give grace to your husband and children. I am so sorry. I ache for you. You are stronger than you will ever know. You are LIBBY!

    May you feel pockets of peace.

  13. Libby, you are always in my heart and I think of you and Jennifer every day. I continue to pray for you and Tony and the kids. Thank you for continuing to bless us with your truth. Love from a faraway friend. ❤️

  14. Libby.. You are in my thoughts and prayers daily.. Multiple times!! I am here for the long haul and you and Jennifer will remain in my heart and prayers always!! Though in RL we have not met I will always be here for you all in spirit and love always!!

  15. Oh Libby, I think of you and your family often. I wish there were something that could be said or done to ease your pain. There isn’t and that is a helpless feeling. A day at a time is all a human being can do. Continue to seek help and maybe things will get easier for you family. Why? If only an answer could be given. God bless!

  16. Reading through the JLK’s Milestones page, I saw baby Charlotte’s first birthday will be on the 12th next month and I cried for you. I pray it can be a 12th that is at least semi-joyful. Prayers today, over and over.

  17. <3. I just can not believe that two months the most precious girl became an angel. Lots of love, hugs and thoughts.

  18. She was such a sparkly and happy girl on earth and I’m sure she is a sparkling angel in Heaven shining down on your beautiful family…prayers for peace and comfort

  19. Still here. Still holding your family in my prayers. We knew Jennifer for such a short time in her Koala class but She left her mark. Tucker still talks about her even though I honestly thought he would’ve forgotten by now. We are still here for you.

  20. Here…here…we are all here, remembering her, you, your family, and loving you all. I wish I could take your pain away, give you back JLK…as a mom, from one mom of a 6 year old princess to another…it just isn’t fair, not at all.

  21. There’s nothing more I can say or add that has not been said. I have been hearing the song “Brave” on the radio a lot and a smile comes to my face every time – thinking of Jennifer finding a way to speak to you – to us – to be brave. You are and so it Tony and your three younger children.

    My friend Tamara joined Jennifer on the 3rd, 5+ years of battling breast cancer. She left behind her husband and her six year old son. I like to think Jennifer and Tamara will meet – two strong, amazing people whose spirit continues to live through us.

    Jessica

  22. I feel as though my heart is breaking all over again for you. I want to go scoop my daughter out of bed and hold her and never let go. Oh Libby, i am just so incredibly sorry every day.

  23. No it’s not fair. It’s the fartherest from fair one can get. She should be here with you. I hurt for you more than I know how to express. Please if you can, try not to beat yourself up about the things you did or didn’t do when you were trying to prepare her for what was coming. I know that when she thinks of you it is with nothing but peace and love. I am confident blame, reproach or regret are completely foreign to her now, especially considering they never seemed to be part of her nature to begin with. I know this does nothing to dispel the ache of missing her, but she would be immensely proud of you. She’s probably up there pointing you all out to everyone she can, going “that’s my family, that’s my family” and beaming with pride the whole time.

  24. Libby,

    You words touched me tonight and got me thinking. You said,”learn how to survive as a family of 5. I thought we would spend time making memories”. While you may learn to survive as a family of 5, you’ll truly always be a forever family of 6! I look at it as the number “5” isn’t complete without Jennifer, but adding the glittery halo that she now wears in Heaven, completes the “5” and turns it into a “6”. And you are making memories, unfortunately she’s not here physically, but you are keeping her alive for you and your family, talking about her with everyone, your pictures and blogging, to your speaking engagements, and non profit, and everything else you do. You are AMAZING Libby! I know I would be one of those that just curled up and stayed in bed all day, so more power to you!

    And while you may be “learning how to be a family of 5 living”, just know that you’ll always be a forever family of 6 living because Jennifer will ALWAYS continue living on in your hearts and in ours <3 Even though it may be more basic now, you all can focus on "surviving.. hanging on.. barely most times…" because I'm sure JLK too is learning how to deal without all of you, missing you all immensely!!!!!! So just remember you are all still doing it together, still as a family of 6 🙂

  25. So sad you know the sound of your husband sobbing, and he you. So fucking unfair, just as he said. It would help if any of this made sense. But it doesn’t. I’m so sorry.

  26. I sit here, tears spilling over and have no words for you Libby. I think Tony said it best, this is just so fucking unfair. Love and prayers to you always <3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *